The Porch

Welcome to Betty's favorites! My name is Betty and I am a self proclaimed "Serial Plate Collector!" Please, take out your best tea cup, fix yourself some tea and stay a while.

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Monday, April 24, 2017

PSALM 34:8

O taste and see that the Lord is good:  blessed is the man that trusteth in Him.
Psalm  34:8

PSALM 119: 130

How sweet are thy words unto my taste!  yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Psalm 119:103

It's Official the Barefoot Season

It's official. The fireflies and frogs have announced the barefoot season.  Even the Autumn  lovers have succumbed to hammocks and wind chimes in wait of the eminent turn.  The rhythmic hum of oscillating fans, lawn mowers, children's clamour and gurgling fountains are the soundtrack of summer.  Family potlucks, cookouts and family reunions invite picnic hampers, nostalgic tablecloths and pieced quilts to sprawl upon the ground. 

This is the nonchalant season when the living is easy.  Relaxed conversation over icy lemonade on the porch swing and patriotic cupcakes with butter cream frosting and trips to the organic market.

May your sunshiny days surprise your thirsty gardens with an occasional thunderstorm.  Revel in the aromas and visions of the leisure season until that first cold snapp induces sweater weather once again!

Fondest Wishes,
Betty Jo

Appalachian Apple Stack Cake


Appalachian Apple Stack Cake

Appalachian Apple Stack Cake, known by several names-dried apple cake, washday cake, gingerbread cake-the elements of  an  Appalachian apple stack cake are essentially the same:  dried apples and hearty disks of dough are married; the apples stewed, spiced, mashed and spread atop  each pancake-like layer.  The resulting texture is thick and tactile on the plate.  Apples, and sorghum offer a touch of sweetness, allowing the cake to retain it's stick-to-the-ribs character.

Several states  lay claim to the cake, but it is widely believed it was brought to Kentucky by James Harrod, the founder off Harrodsburg, in the mid -1700s.  Legend states the confection was used as a wedding cake, with family  members and friends baking and contributing their own layer.  The more layers on the cake, the more popular the bride.  This romantic lore is up fore debate.  The history of this humble cake is that, once assembled, the cake must
sit for at least 2 days before being cut.  Regardless of the cake's history, there's no doubt the cake is a labor of love.

Appalachian food and folklore hold a special place in my heart, as I was born in Pikeville, Kentucky and most of my family are in the Eastern Kentucky Mountains now. 

Appalachian Apple Stack Cake Recipe

1 1/2 lbs. dried apples
1 c. light brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
5-7 c. water

1.  Place the dried apples. light brown sugar cinnamon, and nutmeg in a succe pan.  Add enough water to just cover (approximately 5 to 7 cups) and bring to a boil.
2.  Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and allow to simmer for an hour or more, until the mixture has reduced and the apples have softened,  add more water if the mixture begins to dry out as it cooks.  Continue to simmer until nearly all the water has been absorbed..
3.  Break down the apples with a potato masher.  Remove from the heay and set aside.


2/3 unsalted butter
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. light brown sugar
1 c. sorghum
2 eggs
2 Tbsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp. ground ginger
1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, grated
5 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 c. buttermilk

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2.  Using a mixer on low speed, cream the butter, sugar, and sorghum until smooth and well combined.  Add eggs, one a  time, making sure the first egg is well incorporated before adding the second egg.  Add vanilla, grated ginger and ground ginger.
3.  In a large bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  With the mixer on low speed, add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the bowl with the sugar and spices, and combine well.  Next add 1/2 c. buttermilk, mix to blend all the second half of the buttermilk.  Add the remaining flour and scrape down the sides of the bowl, ensuring that the dough is smooth and well incorporated.
5.  Butter two 9 inch cake pans.  Using a measuring cup, scoop one cup of the dough into a pan.  Using well floured hands or a knife, spread the dough along the bottom of the pan, smoothing over any holes that are created.  The dough will be approximately one quarter of an inch thick.  Repeat for the second pan.
6.  Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until light golden and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.  Place a plate over top of the cake pan.  Wearing an oven mitt, carefully turn the pan and plate upside down, so that the cake will fall out of the pan onto the plate.
7.  Transfer the warm cake to a cake stand and top with 1/2 cup (or more) of the stewed apples.  Turn out the second cake from the pan and slide it on top of the apple-covered first layer.  Add the apples to the second layer of cake. 
8.  Wipe away any remaining crumbs from the cake pans, re-grease, and repeat until all of the cake batter has been baked.  This recipe should yield five cake layers.
9.  Layer each cake with the apples, with the exception of the top layer.  Cover cake tightly with three layers of plastic wrap and place a clean dish towel on top.  Allow the cake to rest at least two days before slicing.




Appalachian Apple Stack Cake

Sunday, April 23, 2017


But the fruit of the Spirit is love,
joy, peace, longsuffering,
gentleness, goodness, faith,
meekness, temperance: against
such there is no law.
GALATIANS: 5:22-23


But he answered and said,
It is written, man shall not
live by bread alone, but by
every word that proceedeth
out of the mouth of God.

MARK 1:17

And Jesus said unto them,
Come ye after me, and I
will make you to become
fishers of men.
MARK 1:17

PSLAM 22:26

The meek shall eat and be satisfied:
they shall praise the Lord that seek
him: your heart shall live for ever.
PSALM 22:26

LUKE 17:6

And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain
of mustard seed, ye might say unto this
sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the
root, and be thou planted in the sea; and
it should obey you.
LUKE 17:6

JOHN 7:37-38

If any man thirst, let him come unto me,
and drink.  He that believeth on me,
as the scripture hath said, out of his belly
shall flow rivers of living water.
JOHN 7: 37-38

Lemon Chiffon Cake


Lemon Chiffon Cake                                       Melissa Wright Cross

Makes 1 (10 inch) Bundt Cake

2 1/2 cups sifted King Arthur flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 sugar, divided
1/2 c. olive oil
7 large eggs
 Tbsp. lemon zest
3/4 c. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
Lemon Glaze (recipe follows)
Garnish: lemon zest, fresh raspberries

1.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2.  In large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and 1 1/4 cups sugar.
Make well in the center,
3.  In a small bowl, whisk together oil, egg yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla extract.
4.  Pour oil mixture into well of flour mixture.  Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute.
5.  In a separate large bowl, beat egg whites with a mixer at medium-high speed until frothy, about 1 minute.  Add cream of tarter, and beat to combine.  With mixer running, gradually add remaining 1/4 cup sugar.  Continue beating until stiff peaks form.  Using a rubber spatula, fold one-third of egg-white mixture into batter. Add two-thirds of egg-whit mixture, folding until just combined.
6.  Spoon batter into an ungreased (10 inch) angel food pan with cooling feet.  Bake until a wooden pick inserted near the center comes out clean, about 55 minutes.  Remove from oven.  Invert pan, and let cool completely.
7.  Place pan in an upright position.  Using a knife, loosen cake from pan.  Dislodge inner core from pan, and remove from cake.  Invert cake onto a wire rack, then invert onto a serving platter.   Spoon Lemon Glaze over cake.  Garnish with lemon zest and raspberries, if desired.  Store, covered, in refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Lemon Glaze

Makes approximately 1 cup

1 1/4 c. confectioners' sugar
2 Tbsp. half-and-half
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

In a small bowl, whisk together sugar, half-and-half, and lemon juice until smooth.  Use immediately.